PMP Exam Pass Rate in 2021

PMP or Project Management professional is an advanced level certification credential offered by globally recognized Project Management Institute(PMI). The demand for the skilled Project Management professionals in the market has risen over the last decade. And, with a promising estimate of a significant number of jobs in the upcoming years, you can also become a part of the Project Management ecosystem.

The various job roles like project managers, consultants, Project Management specialists, etc, are expected to be well equipped with advanced Project Management skills and best practices to overcome challenges that may occur in a project. For a role so demanding, where the smallest of details can play a significant role in deciding the efficiency of the project, the PMP certification comes with a systematic and rigid approach to bring out the best in a candidate. A very comprehensive eligibility criteria ensures a deeper understanding of Project Management fundamentals along with a promise of Project Management education included in the eligibility criteria.

More than 35% of the candidates fail their PMP examination in the first attempt, mostly due to the lack of guidance and structured learning path. Let’s dig a little deeper to understand the PMP exam pass rate in detail.

What is the PMP Exam Pass Mark?

Before releasing their scheduled PMP update, PMI published 61% as the PMP exam pass mark, which meant that you had to answer 106 questions correctly out of the 175 “real questions”. In addition, the PMP exam pass percentage has been dynamic and dependent on how the candidates fared in the exam. For instance, in 2005, PMI set the passing score to 81%, and the candidates who could make the mark dropped drastically, which then forced them to reset it to 61%.

Moreover, candidates would be issued with a report card of a PMP percentage score on correctly answered questions in each domain. However, this is no longer the case, as of 2006, PMI adopted a more “scientific” approach to judging the eligibility of a PMP aspirant and ceased publishing scores. Later on, they updated their settings only to indicate the proficiency levels.

In their present update, the “Target” level has been introduced, i.e., Above Target (similar to Proficient), Target (Moderately Proficient), Below Target and Needs Improvement. PMI also indicated that the passing score is determined by psychometric analysis. Basically, no two PMP candidates receive the same set of exam questions, and thus, each candidate has a different exam score.

Since the exams are not similar, setting a definite PMP exam pass mark would seem unfair, if a candidate is unlucky and receives more “difficult” questions. Therefore, the new psychometric analysis model calculates or rather “sets” the passing score of each set of PMP exam questions. This ensures that the exam “difficulty” is similar for each candidate.

PMP Exam Pass Rate and Average Passing Score

PMP exam pass rate varies upon the test performance. Each PMP exam holds 180 questions and how you stand on these questions will determine if you’ll receive a “pass/fail” result score. This first score is a generalized score, and after it has been decided, a second scoring level is initiated.

This second level breaks down your performance into process groups. Your final passing score is determined on how you rank in the Process Groups relative to average global rankings of other candidates as the PMP examination is a global exam. Global ranking of PMP exams ensures fairness, and it is easy to provide PMP exam pass rate data on global Project Management knowledge assessments.

Recently, the global average PMP exam pass rate dropped from 141 proficient answers to 106, after the exam was adjusted for a fairer assessment of skills.

Syllabus of PMP Certification Training

  • Proven leadership skills & techniques
  • How to communicate effectively?
  • How to create an effective project Schedule?
  • Project Risk Management
  • Ability to create an atmosphere of trust
  • Decision making skills
  • Managing conflicts
  • Agile way of project management

Download detailed course syllabus

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FAQs on PMP Certification

For how long does the PMP certification stay valid?

The PMP Certification is valid for three years, starting from the day the candidate clears the exam. In this period, the candidate must earn 60 PDUs to maintain the PMP credential after the completion of 3 years.

The PMP Certification Exam cost is USD 405 for members and USD 555 for non-members.

The project management experience is any work that is spent planning and executing projects. This may include any work related to initial planning, time management, execution, budget allocation, risk management, etc.

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